Archive for January, 2007

The Minnesota Twins have a gaping hole in their rotation and the maddening thing is that the slot is filled. Just not this season. Next year, we hope. But not this.

It’s easy to be excited about the Twins this year; unlike prior years where the team had numerous good to very good players but no everyday stars and only a couple playoff caliber pitchers, the team now has the stars they’ve lacked. A Twins fan might ask for a little more at third base or left field, but given their small to medium-sized market, it would be expecting a lot to ask for superior talent at all positions. (more…)


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During the holidays I noticed Ernie was limping a little. It was a rocking motion, so it was tough to diagnose exactly which leg was bothering him, but I did see that he struggled to sit, and when he did he went down on his left haunch so he could use his right hind leg to lift himself. (more…)

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It’s wintertime. The ants have moved in. The island of Alameda has it’s own soil type (I’ve been told) called Alameda sandy loam. It could also be Ant Farm Paradise. (more…)

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Been out of commission a couple days. Had my lower wisdom teeth pulled. Surgery went well (for all I knew; I had headphones, listening to the likes of Jim Morrison, Otis Redding, and the Yardbirds), but came out of it doing the full-blown chipmunk cheeks. (more…)

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Of Axes and Pep Talks

Memories are the tricksters of my day. When I’m trying to focus on a text a random memory pops up, which is how a linebacker on my alma mater’s football team made a surprise appearance. As wild as he was, what do you suppose ever happened to him? On an impulse I googled his name, and got the biggest shock of my week. (more…)

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Mid-winter Midnight Lager

We’ve had what passes for cold weather out here in the Bay Area for the last couple weeks; I’ve had to scrape ice off the windshield many mornings, my coworkers all grumble and complain, and the citrus crops have suffered serious damage. But there is one personal advantage to this.

I’ve brewed lagers almost every year since we moved into this house in 2002. Lager in German means storage, as lager yeasts ferment and condition at cooler temperatures than ales do — thus lagers are stored in cool cellars. So I try to brew mine early in the wintertime for the cooler weather, but the last couple years I didn’t brew until the end of January, meaning I’m bottling in March and the beer is bottle-conditioning in spring.

And here I am once again reminding myself, “next winter, I’m going to brew my winter lager closer to the solstice, so it stays nice and cold.” (more…)

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Blue-moon occasionally, I volunteer to clear invasive plants at a place I’ll call the Sanctuary. I’d tell you what and where it is, but there is a bureaucracy involved, and this last weekend the rules got bent.

Mushroom hunters wanting to keep their foraging grounds secret have a joke about this: “I’d tell you where it is, but then I’d have to kill you.” And it would be so hard to track any of you down at your computer screens. (more…)

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